Let’s move forward expecting better from ourselves


Nov. 7, 2020 — While I don’t necessarily subscribe to the theory behind trickle-down economics, I have become a firm believer in the trickle down effect of national discourse and its ability to permeate how we feel about our lives — and, just as importantly, in recognizing the good in each other.

The overt divisiveness that has arisen within our society over the last few years has conditioned us to accept pessimism as a natural part of our daily perspective. 

Forget about wearing rose-colored glasses or beer goggles; more often than not, we have come to instinctively reach for a blindfold when it comes to how we see each other and anyone with a differing viewpoint.

It’s a mindset that runs completely counter to being thankful — because it narrows our vision and minimizes the chance of recognizing any good that exists within our peripheral.

To put it plainly, it’s hard to appreciate a sunset while facing east.

Admittedly, I’m no exception. And not just because I have a lousy sense of direction.

In today’s constant barrage of information, opinion and analysis through news outlets, social media and notifications on phones, computers and tablets, our attention is constantly being diverted away from real interaction with each other and toward a nebulous relationship with those we hardly know.

The result is a growing inability to live in “real” time and in the moment with one another.

With the final tally of elections essentially over, and taking into account the historic participation made by fellow Americans, I hope we can finally begin talking about the things that unite us and the common good that defines us as family, community and ultimately as Americans.

I believe the trickle-down divisiveness around us can be diluted if we allow the ripple effect of kindness to provide some much-needed levity. 

It is within times like this, especially as we enter into the holiday seasons of Thanksgiving, Christmas and the New Year, that we are reminded of the things that unite us as people rather than partisanship.

I realize that the end of the elections doesn’t guarantee something better. 

However, I do believe in the natural pendulum swing we regularly take as a society in our ever-constant need and desire to correct ourselves in the pursuit of something better.

I still believe that, despite how our divisions have been amplified, we ultimately share more common ground than our surface tribalism would have us believe.

We can expect better as we move forward. 

And we should.

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